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North Islander honoured for decades of service helping victims recover

After spending 20 years helping victims and survivors of domestic violence, Debbie Klaric is being recognized with a provincial award.

Klaric is the program manager for police-based victim services at the North Island Crisis and Counselling Centre Society in Port Hardy. On Friday, she and four others were honoured by the province at the 26th annual Community Safety and Crime Prevention Awards in Vancouver.

Klaric received the “Services to Victims” award.

Klaric has been a voice for victims and survivors in a challenging environment for decades, and has made meaningful changes helping survivors get help.

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Public safety minister Mike Farnworth says the awards recognize community leaders who have made positive changes in the lives of people impacted by crime and violence.

Klaric was the only person from the island recognized this year.

From the Awards Package

Debbie Klaric has been the face of police-based victim services on the North Island
for over 20 years. As the manager of Northern Vancouver Island RCMP Victim Services, she provides services to three detachment areas within the Regional District of Mount Waddington. Debbie works with victims and witnesses of crime and trauma, providing assistance under the Victims of Crime Act and Canadian Victim Bill of Rights.

In 1994, Debbie participated in the North Island Crisis Line training and continued to volunteer with them for over 16 years. This is where she realized her passion for social services. In 1998, Debbie was hired to assist with the opening of a new police-based victim service program in Port Hardy. She worked tirelessly to get the program up and running,
the only program on the North Island that would provide specific information and assistance to victims, survivors, and witnesses of crime and trauma. The program was well received and in 2010, the Port McNeill detachment area was added to the program and now covers all three North Island communities: Port Hardy, Port Alice, and Port McNeill.

The Mount Waddington Regional district is a large geographical area that encompasses many rural and remote communities and villages, several of which are Indigenous. Resources are limited in these communities, some of which can only being accessed by plane or boat. Travel within the detachment areas is often difficult. The needs of each community are diverse and often require special considerations due to their remoteness.

Debbie is immensely dedicated to ensuring that all these communities have the best possible service delivery. As a longtime North Island resident of over 40 years, Debbie understands the dynamics and unique needs of each community and the challenges of remote living.

Debbie goes above and beyond to develop collaborative partnerships to support victims and survivors which includes participating and supporting community networks that respond to critical incidents. For many years Debbie has organized and led the North Island Domestic
Violence Committee meetings, and she continues to work closely with the North Island Crisis and Counselling Centre to ensure there are no gaps in services for files from communities that do not have specialized victim service programs.

Debbie supports victims and survivors of crime and violence in remote and rural communities with compassion, respect, and dignity.

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